HomeKit: So home automation with Apple works


The smart home support "HomeKit" Apple is mature with iOS 10th We provide an overview of the functioning and clarify the question: Are HomeKit products for everyone or only for techies useful for?

Light turn on, open the garage door, regulate heating - the iPhone and Siri can in conjunction with HomeKit products. With iOS 8 Apple introduced the interface. Big advantage: In the room, in the apartment, the house does not collect multiple point solutions from different vendors. No, thanks HomeKit they can be controlled bundled. The "good night" command to the language assistant can therefore available for the shutdown of all devices and lowering the shutters. For more details see below.

The home app in iOS 10

The biggest coming HomeKit-innovation, we have already presented separately, is the Home app in iOS 10Apple hereby now provides its own control available - previously you had to rely on apps of accessories manufacturers. The company wanted, we have learned through Apple circles until just install an infrastructure and see what the accessory manufacturers create and need. (No secret that iOS developers often times looks for its own apps on the competition, is inspired -. And then submits a better result)

iOS10-home HomeKit

Apple has Home designed for the screen size of the iPad, but the app is available on the iPhone. We also find the main switch in the control center of IOS 10, on the third page.

We hereby create scenes, individual devices, define spaces and program automation.

The behind HomeKit

Apple has very accurately determine which products are supported. The categories currently include:

  • Lighting,
  • Sunscreen (shutters)
  • Sockets and switches,
  • Castles,
  • Doorbell (from IOS 10)
  • Cameras (live streaming, images, sound, iOS 10)
  • Heating and air conditioning,
  • Fan,
  • Sensors.

For example, the lighting looks on and off and dimming before, the heating temperature control. For locks, there is the additional assurance over the fingerprint sensor Touch ID - if an unlocked iOS device but should even fall into the wrong hands.

By the way: The device control is end-to-end encrypted, the data locally on the devices of the user. The strict security guidelines prepared some accessories manufacturer headaches. Ultimately, they are in everyone's interest.

elgato-eve-energy test-HomeKit

HomeKit different Rooms and scenes. For example, we can have a lamp individually, directly control. Imagine a scene "Evening" together, we turn on the light bundled with other products, dimmed, for example, to.

about automation are sensors, times or location changes to trigger actions: You come home and the lights go on - thanks to the localization of the iPhone and a HomeKit programming.

The accessories are connected to the network (WLAN), in some cases, the controller via Bluetooth is running.

Available devices with HomeKit connection

Among the most interesting in this country available HomeKit devices include (Amazon links):

  • Lamp starter Philips Hue LED lamp *HomeKit: So home automation with Apple works (Philips Hue in the test)
  • Switched outlet and meter Elgato Eve Energy *HomeKit: So home automation with Apple works (Eve in the test)
  • Heizkörperthermostat Elgato Eve Thermo *HomeKit: So home automation with Apple works (Eve thermocouple in the test)
  • Room air sensor Elgato Eve Room *HomeKit: So home automation with Apple works

The Munich-based company Elgato at least in this country at the forefront. In the US, more companies at the start, offering overseas already, or at least soon other solutions, for example blinds (Lutron), ceiling fans are now (Hunter fan), smoke alarms (First Alert), intercom systems with camera (August). Nearly 100 products on the market should be.


Apple TV and iPad, a HomeKit hub

In order to access light switches, temperature and the like abroad, we need a hub, which is responsible for communication in the house. Practical: Apple requires no dedicated hardware for this, no, it is sufficient to an Apple TV from the 3rd generation. From autumn also an iPad with iOS can 10 (see compatibility) may be used if it remains as lying at home. About the iCloud account, a home control is possible even if you are not logged directly on a home network.

HomeKit products, operated only for techies?

Clear Apple wants to achieve with the iOS interface and the new Home App the masses. But that can not be a very simple topic like smart home succeed?

You can feel the efforts of Apple, to make access to the less technology-savvy users as comfortable as possible. This starts with the device - the security code of the product does not have to be typed about, but is simply photographed as with newer iTunes cards. And it ends with individually definable background images - for example, a photo of each room.

Some getting used to date required the distinction of spaces, scenes, individual devices and the wording of the relevant accessories. Since you had to perfectly pure Peeve something. With the new Home app, which is adapted to the current structure of HomeKit, this should still be a little easier.


The pleasant to HomeKit: One can start very small, with a single product (e.g., a thermostat or outlet). The system is easy to expand - or not. At Smart Home Everyone thus can venture that uses a smartphone (or iPhone).

On the subject:

  • Guest access to Apple's HomeKit: So other people can contribute to shaping
  • HomeKit drive products with Apple TV on the go


Start Photogallery(9 pictures)Functions of the iPhone 7: What should be the highlights?

iOS 10 - first performance:

71455WWDC 2016 - iOS 10

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fromSebastian Trepesch

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